Delhi Court Convicted former Coal Secretary HC Gupta

HC Gupta

NEW DELHI:  A Delhi Court has convicted former Coal Secretary H C Gupta and former joint-Secretary in the Ministry of Coal, KS Kropha. They were charged under Section 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 419 (cheating), and corruption in a coal scam case related to the irregularities in the allocation of the Lohara East coal block in Maharashtra.

The bench headed by Special Judge Arun Bhardwaj also convicted Grace Industries Ltd. (GIL) and its Director Mukesh Gupta for criminal conspiracy and cheating. Gupta was earlier convicted in three other coal scam cases and his appeal against those convictions is pending before Delhi High Court. He is currently on bail.

According to the CBI, reports, between 2005 and 2011, the accused persons hatched a criminal conspiracy and cheated MoC, and the Government of India by dishonestly and fraudulently inducing the MoC to allocate ‘Lohara East Coal Block’ in favor of GIL based on false information about net worth, capacity, equipment, and status of procurement and installation of the plant.

Further, CBI also stated that the company, in its application, claimed its net worth as ₹120 CRS whereas its net worth was only ₹ 3.3 CRS and that the company also falsified its existing capacity as 1,20,000 TPA against 30,000 TPA.

Earlier, in the year 2014, the Supreme Court canceled the entire allocations of coal blocks.

The next date of hearing is on August 4, when the court will hear arguments on the quantum of sentences to be awarded to four convicts.

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